The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Bourke Street Bakery Book

welling's picture

Bourke Street Bakery Book

I'm not a professional baker but i have been successfully baking as an amateur for a couple of years now. In this time I have learned a few basics, such as that strong white flour can absorb water of 60% of the flour weight (approximately). That is, 3/8 water to 5/8 flour. I know that this is flour dependent, but only within a couple of percent.

Today i tried to use the Bourke Street Bakery Cookbook to make simple white pizza dough. The recipe called for 600g flour and 445ml liquid (water, milk, oil). This equates to 74% liquid to flour weight. Needless to say, the dough resembled a batter and required several handfuls of flour to bring back to workable dough.

I normally use a Ciabatta dough for my pizza bases, so I am quite used to working with a wet dough, but this was ridiculous. Luckily I have enough experience to know what to look for, but others may not be so fortunate. I will be interested to see how other recipes from this book work out.

I am keen to hear other's thoughts and experiences with this book.


suave's picture

Pizza dough I use most often is 71%.  That is if you don't count oil, and you really should not.   I have no problem making this dough with average strength bread flour, and I'm sure that with stronger flour, like KA BF, I could easily go to 75%.  So, I would not rush blaming the book.

ananda's picture

See my reply on your other similar thread; I'm with Suave on this


rossnroller's picture

I'm with suave and ananda on the hydration issue. My SD pizza formula is way too wet to work as you would a typical pizza dough - but the results beat the hell out of dough that is firm enough to toss!


welling's picture

Thanks all. I really appreciate the constructive advice. If nothing else, my frustration has led me to a really good online baker's forum.

I will try working with the wetter dough for pizza bases and Ciabatta. I must have been getting too comforable with the easy to work (but lower Hydration) dough. Hopefully i'll get an even crispier base.

Not sure about the KA BF abbreviation. I take it the BF is Baker's Flour, but have never come across the term KA BF.